Chicken and onions roast quickly while staying moist in a steam oven. Then the roasting juices and onions are combined with bread cubes, currants and arugula to create a lighter variation on stuffing. To prepare the dish in a conventional oven, preheat it to 400ºF. Put the onion slices in a roasting pan and set a roasting rack on top, then place the chicken on the rack. Roast until the chicken reaches the internal temperature specified below, about 1 hour.
Roasted Chicken with Warm Bread Salad
1 chicken, 4 to 4 1/2 lb., patted dry
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
6 fresh thyme sprigs
2 bay leaves
1 yellow onion, sliced
1 Tbs. olive oil
5 cups bread cubes (from country-style loaf), tossed in olive oil and toasted in the oven
1 Tbs. currants
2 Tbs. red wine vinegar
1 Tbs. water
1/2 tsp. sugar
2 green onions, white and light green portions, sliced
1/2 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
Zest of 1 lemon
4 oz. arugula
Generously season the chicken cavity and skin with salt and pepper. Loosen the skin on the breast and slide the thyme sprigs and bay leaves under the skin. Put the yellow onion on the roasting tray of a Cuisinart steam oven and toss the onion with the olive oil. Set the roasting rack on top and place the chicken on the rack.
Position a rack in the lower rung of the steam oven. Transfer the tray to the oven and turn the oven to the bake/steam setting at 450ºF according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh, away from the bone, registers 170ºF, about 45 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a carving board, cover loosely with aluminum foil and let rest for 10 minutes. Pour the onion and juices into a large heatproof bowl and add the bread cubes.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the currants, vinegar, water and sugar and let stand for 15 minutes. Add to the bowl with the onion and bread, along with the green onions, parsley and lemon zest. Toss until the bread has absorbed most of the liquid. Season with salt and pepper.
Arrange a bed of arugula on a large platter. Scatter the bread salad on top. Carve the chicken and arrange on the salad. Serve immediately. Serves 6.